Remarks against President: HC asks Bengal govt, Minister to file affidavits

The Calcutta High Court on Thursday directed the West Bengal government, and the West Bengal minister of state for correctional services, Akhil Giri to file separate affidavits in response to the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed over the derogatory comments by Giri referring to the looks of President Droupadi Murmu.

The division bench of the Calcutta High Court’s Chief Justice, Prakash Srivastava and Justice Rajarshi Bharadwaj have directed the state government to file an affidavit within two weeks on the steps taken by it on the FIR filed against Giri in the matter.

At the same time, the division bench has also directed Akhil Giri to file a separate affidavit citing the reasons on why he made such a comment concerning the looks of the Indian President.

The petitioner, Sushmita Saha, an advocate at the same court, has also made West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee a party in the PIL.

Giri’s counsel on Thursday appealed to the division bench for exclusion of the name of the chief minister on this count. The division bench has asked Giri’s counsel to make a written submission on this count. The next hearing in the matter will be on December 12.

Multiple FIRs were filed in West Bengal as well as in Delhi against Giri for his comments.

BJP’s Lok Sabha member from Bishnupur constituency Saumitra Khan has sought National Commission of Women (NCW) chairperson Rekha Sharma’s intervention in ensuring the arrest of Akhil Giri.

Leader of Opposition in West Bengal Assembly, Suvendu Adhikari sought the intervention of the West Bengal Governor, La Ganesan for immediate removal of Giri from his ministerial position.

In face of all-round criticism Trinamool Congress first censured Akhil Giri though a public state and finally Mamata Banerjee made a public apology on her minister’s behalf.

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